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News » Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-04-13

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-04-13

Seattle Mariners Inside Pitch 2009-04-13
A week into the season, the look the Mariners are giving the American League is completely different than the one they projected a year ago.

Seattle went on the road and won five of seven games, including a three-game sweep of the A's in Oakland to start the season. And if the Mariners hadn't let a two-run lead with two-out in the ninth slip away, the record could well be 6-1.

It means almost nothing that the Mariners come out of the first week with the lead in the AL West, but Seattle was never in first place at any point in 2008 en route to a 101-loss season, so that's something.

Brandon Morrow and David Aardsma have two saves each as the bullpen, which was responsible for a two-run blown lead against the Twins, has nevertheless turned in a terrific first week.

The pen already has two victories and a 2.36 ERA through April 12 despite the fact that three of the top contributors from the 2008 -- J.J. Putz, Sean Green and R.A Dickey -- are now gone.

The Mariners are trying not to overuse Morrow, whose innings were limited during the spring because of a tight right forearm. So they have turned to Aardsma, who picked up the first two saves of his big league career this weekend against the A's.

MARINERS 1, A's 0: LHP Erik Bedard turned in perhaps his best start in a Seattle uniform, throwing 8 1/3 innings of three-hit shutout baseball before RHP David Aardsma got the last two outs to complete the sweep of the A's.

The game was particularly significant in that Bedard pitched into the ninth inning by keeping his pitch count low and keeping runners off base. When he came to the Mariners last year, he was injured for much of the season and had trouble getting past the fifth or sixth inning.

Bedard gave up three hits, all singles, and walked one. He struck out six and was given the chance to complete the game. But a leadoff hit in the ninth and a sacrifice bunt put CF Ryan Sweeney at second base, and Aardsma came in.

Aardsma struck out 1B Jason Giambi, walked LF Matt Holliday, then got DH Jack Cust to line out to LF Endy Chavez to end it.

The A's never had runners on base with less than two out until the ninth inning.

Seattle didn't have a hit until 3B Adrian Beltre singled off RHP Trevor Cahill in the seventh inning with one out. Later in the inning DH Mike Sweeney doubled to deep center to score Beltre all the way from first, and that was all Bedard and Aardsma would need.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: April 13, 2009

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